2021 was an eventful year in the world of retail—from holiday supply chain disruptions to everchanging consumer behavior through the ongoing pandemic. Despite it all, independent retail once again proved its resilience.
Today, we’re excited to share our 2021 year in review—our way for us all to reflect on this momentous year and celebrate the accomplishments of Faire’s growing global community of independent entrepreneurs. We’ve rounded up fun facts and insights from the Faire marketplace to look back on the biggest trends from another year full of the unexpected.
Connecting across continents
This year, Faire expanded to 15 new countries in Europe—from France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and beyond—leading to thousands of new connections between retailers and brands around the world. Welcome!
What products were people crazy about this year? From cupcake bites and soothing satin pillowcases to beard oils and mindfulness cards, here are some of 2021’s bestsellers.
In the U.S.—cocktails & candy
Top product: Rainbow Sour Belts by Candy Club
America indulged its sweet tooth this year—in fact, the word “candy” was one of the top 5 most-searched terms in the U.S. Additionally, in 10 out of 12 months, the bestselling products in the U.S. were sugary snacks and sweet drinks, with items like gummy bears, cupcake bites, and ready-made cocktail jars topping the list.
In Canada—comfort and plants
Top product: Petite Wood Bowl by Forever Green Art
Canadian consumers favored all things comfort in 2021, from soft, luxurious pillowcases to healthy beverage blends. They also spent many months tending to their plants, with products like vitamins for plants and propagation kits ruling the bestsellers list from February through May.
Finally, merchandise inspired by a favorite Canadian sitcom landed among the bestsellers this year.
In the U.K.—chocolate, mindfulness, & plush pumpkins
Top product: LSW Mind Cards by LSW London
The U.K. devoured fruity chocolate and mindfulness cards this year, and these self-care ingredients ruled
the bestsellers list in February, March, April, and June.
In France—bath & body
Top product: Huile à barbe (Beard Oil) by Sapiens
Consumers in France favored all things personal grooming this year, with products like natural shaving gel, nail polish, and bamboo toothbrushes proving popular.
In Germany—wellness drinks
Top product: BIO JAMU No.7 by JAMU GmBH
In Germany, 4 out of 5 of the bestselling products were from wellness drink brand JAMU GmBH.
And some cross-country appeal
Plush velvet decorative pumpkins in all sizes from Your Heart’s Content appeared on bestsellers lists in the U.K., France, and Germany.
People are searching for…
We took a look at the most popular search terms of the year on Faire to see what’s been on our customers’ minds. The answer? Candles, candles, candles. The word placed 1st or 2nd in every market for most searched term of the year.
Top search terms of 2021
Favorite candle scents around the world
Wardrobes get an upgrade
In 2021, as Covid-19 lockdowns were lifted for a brief period of time, consumers around the world traded in their sweatpants for timeless wardrobe staples like jeans and blouses.
Jean sales increased by 50% globally, and the U.S. prepared to dress to impress with “shirts & blouses” ranking first place for most popular category and “dangle & hoop earrings” coming in 5th.
Feel good moments
Our curated collections feature products spanning the marketplace, from holiday stocking stuffers to beauty. This year, retailers continued diversifying their brand portfolio and shopping by their values, with Zero-Waste Gifts and Black-owned Businesses ranking among the top 10 most visited collections.
Top 3 global brand values of 2021:
Top 5 global collections of 2021:
Pop culture influence
The power of pop culture and social media continued to be evident in 2021, with trends emerging based on viral products featured on TikTok and celebrity moments.
People are talking about…
In July of 2021, following Britney’s highly publicized conservatorship hearing, searches for “Free Britney” products increased by almost 1,500—up 105% from June and 744% from May.
The breakthrough hit Squid Game snuck its way onto Faire, with almost 5,000 searches for “squid game” surfacing after the show’s debut.
As seen on social media
“Nailfluencers” first became popular on Instagram in 2020, when people began doing their own press-on manicures at home during quarantine. This year “press on nails” was searched almost 4.5k times on Faire.
Smiley face adorned apparel and accessories was another trend that exploded thanks to circulation on Instagram and TikTok. As a result, the term “smiley face” was searched over 37k times in 2021.
Bike shorts made a comeback with over 87 million views for the hashtag on TikTok. On Faire, bike shorts were searched for almost 14k times.